By Jerod Young • Jerod Young • 

Dayton girls soccer loses on PKs

NEWBERG — Tuesday’s girls soccer playoff match between Dayton and Cascade Christian came to an exciting conclusion at Austin Sports Complex, with the Challengers defeating the Pirates in two rounds of penalty kicks.

“Without a doubt, we didn’t play our best,” Flores said. “It wasn’t until overtime that we showed true aggression and that we wanted to win.”

With both teams playing for the first time in the 3A/2A/1A state playoffs, neither team could score the game-winning goal through regulation and overtime. Flores admitted it was tough to keep up with the Cascade Christian speed.

“They were hard to adjust to,” Flores said. “They run well and it was tough for us to keep up with them.”

The match came down to penalty kicks. Each team sent up five players. The Pirates sent Shelby Byerly, Elizabeth Meaders, Julianne Benson, Mireya Vazquez, and Vannessa Ramirez to face the Challengers goalkeeper.

Byerly, Meaders and Vazquez scored for Dayton (11-5-2), but the Challengers (10-5-1) also made 3-of-5 kicks to send the match to a second penalty kick round. Cascade Christian went first, a goal would give them the win.

Instead of sending a scorer to kick first, the Challengers threw the Pirates a curveball. They sent up goalkeeper Jessica Weber. Weber kicked the ball on the ground to the right side of the goal, and it snuck past Dayton goalkeeper Morgyn Erb for the win.

“That was hard,” Flores said. “We thought Morgyn had it and it just got by her, but she was great for us, kept us in it all night.”

Dayton’s first playoff appearance in girls soccer ended in tears, heartbreak and disappointment, but Flores reminded his players of who they are and why they play. He made each player put their hand over their heart, paused, and then explained why he had them do it.

“What’s your hand on?” Flores asked. “It’s on the Dayton emblem. Where is that? It’s over your heart, close to your heart. This team, this school, this uniform and this sport is close to your heart. Keep it there, always.”

Western Mennonite girls soccer

The Western Mennonite girls soccer team had a bye in the first round of the 3A/2A/1A state playoffs and plays at 2 p.m. Saturday vs. Glide. The match is at West Salem High School.

The Pioneers (14-0-1) this season and won the Special District 3 Championship. Their only tie this season came at Santiam Christian in September. Since then, they have won 10 matches in a row.

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